Helpful Hints for the Question and Answer Session
- Anticipate questions that the class might ask (by putting yourself in their shoes), and prepare to answer similar questions.
- Practice asking each other questions
- Group potential questions into “categories,” or topics-prepare some answers
- Develop a plan for how questions will be answered:
- Will group members simply take turns by answering them based on a rotation?
- Will the material be divided up into categories of expertise so that each group member will serve as the expert who can answer a certain type of question?
- How will group members let each other know if help is needed when answering a tough question?
- Will group members be allowed to “add on” to each other’s answers?
- Answer concise and direct – if a yes or no is a sufficient answer, leave it at that.
- Repeat or rephrase the question before you answer.
- Listen to the ENTIRE question before answering.
- Have a plan for a time when you do not have the answer to a question:
- You can say, “I don’t know.”
- You can ask another group member for help.
- You can tell the audience you will do further research and get back to them.
- If you do not understand a question, ask the audience member to repeat it.
- Make eye contact with the person asking the question, but scan the audience when answering.
- What if a group member answers the question incorrectly?
- Carefully provide the correct information without embarrassing your fellow group member (“I think Bob may have misunderstood your question, what I think you were asking was…”).
- What if someone asks a question that the presentation covered?
- Answer the question again; consider explaining it in a different way.
- What if an audience member becomes rude or disruptive?
- Stay calm; ask other audience members if they have questions; ask the person to speak individually after the presentation; defuse loaded questions before answering.